“I have received countless congratulatory and offensive messages on social media. And if we look at the result collectively, I find that the number of people scolding me is much less.”
says the creator of the sculpture Maria Callas Aphrodite Lity, who has been at the center of an internet scandal for the past few days.
“None of these comments move me in the least. I know what I want and where I am going artistically. I go where there is peace and happiness. ” These first words of the artist Aphrodite Litis in an interview she gave to the Greek edition of Katimerini, were the answer to the question of how she feels, suddenly finding herself in the center of an Internet scandal.
The discussion was prompted by the numerous reactions elicited by the statue. Maria Callas, created by her on the instructions of the Greek Association “Maria Callas”. The bronze sculpture marks the beginning of the association’s activities, culminating in 2023, the centenary of the diva’s birth.
The sculpture is located among the trees on Dionysiou Areopagito, and its opening took place last Friday. Almost immediately, the Internet was filled with a lot of criticism and sometimes offensive remarks about the project. “All artists doubt that what we do is in our nature. But I try my best, from the point of view of my art and the people to whom it is addressed, ”comments Aphrodite Lity. She continues: “It is good for the viewer to judge a work of art, especially if it is public. So far, criticism is born only from what they see. “
The author does not enter into disputes on principle. “Plus, I don’t use social media, which allows me to stay where I want to be,” she says. “Live contact with the project was very important for thinking people. From the day it opened, I received countless congratulatory messages before it got started on social media. And if we look at the result in the aggregate, I find that the votes of criticism are much less. “
The artist, professor at the School of Fine Arts, who has numerous exhibitions and honors diplomas to her credit, is not the first time creating public monuments. For example, a bronze statue of Patriarch Joachim III, which Aphrodite Lity created to order, is located in the courtyard of the house. And in the case of the statue of Callas, created on the instructions of the association, creativity “connected” her with the person she loved. Therefore, Ms Lity decided to donate her work to the association.
“I enjoyed studying a unique personality. And talking about her with affection,” the sculptor comments. because there are many Greek elements in it: Doric form, simplicity, internal composition, but also grace, which is expressed in sculpture by simple decorations and folds of the mantle. The project was handed over to me at the end of 2019. As soon as a vision of what the statue would look like matured inside me, I submitted the project for approval to the association. The project of the work was transferred to the Municipality of Athens as foreseen and then passed through the Ephorat of Modern Monuments and the Ephorat of the Acropolis. A place for the statue was proposed in the same place: near the Odeon of Herodes Atticus.
The approval of the project was equally solemn. “I know why I made the statue, my work has its own style, and it was decided to do it,” the author concludes. “I work with light and it has become part of my way of expressing myself in sculpture. The statue is in harmony with the environment – small thickets of olives – and does not try to stand out from them. Space has a simple character, and above it, like a halo, is the sky. ”